Wednesday 3 August 2016

Pregnancy and births - what happens if something goes wrong?

For many parents the moment they see that second line on a pregnancy test highlighting a little one is on the way the start of an exciting adventure begins. The joy and excitement is heightened when they first see their bundle of joy wriggling about and hear its heartbeat during scans.

Whilst many parents feel joy and excitement during pregnancy many also feel worry too.

The worry and concern for their children that parents feel often starts during pregnancy and continues for a lifetime, even when their children are grown ups with children of their own to the parents they are still their babies.

Most parents rely on medical professionals and the technology they use to identify any medical complications during pregnancy, the birth and then in the first few months of a newborn's life. Identifying medical complications early and planning a course of treatment if possible can be the difference between successful medical treatment and further complications resulting in worse health or even death.

Having been under consultant care during both of my pregnancies and monitored throughout the labours I had the reassurance that medical professionals were on hand to identify and deal with any medical issues. Thankfully no issues arose with us but it could have been a different story.

Sadly there are cases when mistakes or medical negligence happen which can result in stark consequences that can have a huge impact on the health and life of the child. When the medical professionals fail in their care and treatment which results in serious consequences parents can question what has happened and evoke their right to compensation. Whilst compensation does not make up for the failures or improve health it can ease the financial burden that parents find themselves in.

First4SeriousInjury has vast experience in pregnancy and birth claims. They Provide support and guidance on claiming compensation for situations such as medical negligence and incorrect diagnosis of conditions such as cerebral palsy and jaundice which left untreated can result in kernicterus.

When Jelly Bean was born he was jaundice. Shortly after his birth he was diagnosed with jaundice and it was monitored closely by the hospital then the community midwives and health visitor from home. Thankfully his case of jaundice was mild and it soon improved until he was no longer jaundice.

However it could have been a different story. For some parents and babies it is a different story. If undiagnosed or not diagnosed and treated quickly jaundice can have serious complications and can cause the serious condition kernicterus.

Kernicterus is a rare but serious complication of untreated jaundice in babies. Thankfully it is now extremely rare in the UK, affecting less than 1 in every 100,000 babies but for those it does it affect it can have lifelong consequences.

It's caused by excess bilirubin damaging the brain or central nervous system. The bilirubin can damage the brain and spinal cord, which can be life threatening.

Your baby may be at risk of developing kernicterus if- 
* they have a very high level of bilirubin in their blood
* the level of bilirubin in their blood is rising rapidly
* they don't receive any treatment

Initial symptoms of kernicterus in babies include - 
* decreased awareness of the world around them– for example, they may not react when you clap your hands in front of their face 
* their muscles become unusually floppy, like a rag doll 
* poor feeding 
* as kernicterus progresses, additional symptoms can include seizures (fits) and arching of the neck or spine.

Treatment for kernicterus involves using an exchange transfusion as used in the treatment of newborn jaundice.

If significant brain damage occurs before treatment, a child can develop serious and permanent problems, such as:
* cerebral palsy – a condition that affects a child's movement and co-ordination
* hearing loss – which can range from mild to severe
* learning difficulties
* involuntary twitching of different parts of their body
* problems maintaining normal eye movements – people affected by kernicterus have a tendency to gaze upwards or from side to side rather than straight ahead 
*poor development of the teeth

First4SeriousInjury can help families who’ve been affected by Kernicterus. They are committed to helping take that weight of your shoulders and getting you the compensation that can help improve your child’s quality of life and help with the financial burden that comes with getting the right care at home for those affected by kernicterus. From your first contact you’ll be in touch with trained professionals who understand the impacts that kernicterus can have on you and your family.

Other Pregnancy & Birth Claims that First4SeriousInjury can help with include -
Cerebral Palsy
* Erbs Palsy
* Necrotising Enterocolitis
* Meconium Aspiration

First4SeriousInjury are there to help you every step of the way, from helping you find out if you are entitled to compensation to guiding you through the claim. They also offer a no fuss, no-obligation service and no win, no fee agreement to ensure that the process is as stress-free as possible for you.

If you think you and your little one may be entitled to compensation then please contact First4SeriousInjury via their website or by calling them on 0808 163 5495.

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